A PERSONAL PRAYER
I thank you God for my marriage, for the gift of a partner in life, for a love that is real and gritty and resilient.
Here is what I want: I want so much to be a man of my word, to be trustworthy, to keep all of my promises. I want to feel loved and appreciated, wanted and respected. I want loneliness to go away and to experience real intimacy. God, thank you for offering me what I want. I pray that you would show me how to grow my marriage so that my wife and I can get what we want together always.
God, I know that my spouse cannot be the key to my happiness. The real emptiness that is so much a part of the human condition, even my condition, can only be filled with a relationship with you. You are the best. Better than any drug. Better than any food. Better than any drink. Better than any sex. Better than any adventure. Better than any success. Better than any money. Show me how to be faithful to you, and grow my love for you each and every day.
I love you, God.
QUESTIONS FOR CONVERSATION AND REFLECTION
Do you tend to focus on the letter of the law or look to the core of the issue? Are there some promises in your life you have not fully kept? Is there some relationship in which you need to stop, heal, water? How can you do that?
SOME THOUGHTS TO SHARE
This week, we continue our sermon series discussing the Ten Commandments. We will talk this Sunday, July 23, about the #7, “You shall not commit adultery.” Charles Allen, the legendary pastor of First United Methodist in downtown Houston, wrote that more pain has been caused by the violation of this commandment than any other, including the prohibition against murder. We are going to talk this Sunday about why this is so important to God, and discuss in straightforward ways what to do about it. If you are married, I really do hope you will come and be a part of it. If you are not married, the principles that we will discuss and Jesus’ teaching about this issue still apply to you, so please plan to be present. If you are not able to join us in church this Sunday, watch us where you are via LiveStream, watch the replay of the sermon online, or listen to the Podcast.
Our Senior High youth are on a mission trip to Kentucky this week. Young people always return from these trips with lives changed – God working in the “inside” to turn them away from themselves “outside.” Inside-out is what we do here. Pray for Christ to be very real to these young people this week, and to flow through them into the lives of the people they are serving.
Sunday, July 23
Dear Lord in Heaven, please give strength to those who work for peace in the world to prevail. Work in the minds of those who hate to find room for understanding, compassion, and love in their thoughts. Please help loving thoughts to prevail and lead to acts of kindness towards all humanity. In Jesus’ name we pray, amen.
Monday, July 24
Dear God, thank you for the blessings of a new day. May those we meet today see you in us. Amen.
Tuesday, July 25
Heavenly Father, I thank you for the volunteers in the Prayer Shawl Ministry. You have blessed them with the gift of working with their hands, and they use their gift to help others. Thank you for their willingness to serve you and to show your love to others. Amen.
Wednesday, July 26
Lord thank you for your abiding love. We pray for the distractions in our lives. Lord, help us to be present so our joy may be full in you. Amen.
Thursday, July 27
God, thank you for my life and all the blessings you have given me. Teach me to be a blessing to others in your name. Amen.
Friday, July 28
Loving God, your creation reminds us of your majesty. When we consider everything you made, we are in awe. Help us steward all that you have given us. Amen.
Saturday, July 29
Heavenly Father, thank you for our earthly families. Help us to cherish the time we have with them and to bless them as they have blessed us. Grow us together in your love. Amen.
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